Sound Card Packet  with AGWPE

Translations and PDF of this site
Most recent AGWPE version is:  2013.415  15 Apr 2013

Computer requirements
Packet Engine Pro

Configure AGWPE
Download and Install
Basic AGWPE Setup
2 Radio Setup
2 Card Setup

Sound Device Setup
Basic Device Settings
Rename Sound Device
Additional Settings
Using the Tuning Aid

Program Behavior

AGWPE Features
AGWPE on a Network
Baud Rates & Modes
Remote Control
TCP/IP Over Radio
Tips and Tricks
Traffic Parameters

Compatible Programs:
Setup Help

Radio Interface
Getting Started
Kits and Pre-assembled
USB SignaLink
Receive Audio Cable
Transmit Audio Cable
PTT (TX Control) Cable
2 Radio Modification

About Packet
Packet Overview
Exchange Modes
What To Do with Packet
Common Frequencies
Frame Headers
Further Reading

Problems with Program Behavior

1. Problems with the AGWPE Program
2. Linking to Client Applications
3. Extra packets seen

Note: Please make sure you are using the latest version of AGWPE before troubleshooting problems. Your problem may have been fixed by the most recent version of AGWPE!

As you troubleshoot receive problems, remember that AGWPE provides you with a some visual aids:

  • If AGWPE loads successfully, you will see the AGWPE tower icon at the bottom right of your screen in the Windows System Tray.
  • If a "radioport" has been successfully configured, you should see the AGWPE modem icon next to the tower icon. There will be one modem icon for each working radioport. A green pixel in the modem icon will flash once if AGWPE successfully decodes a packet. A red pixel in the modem icon will flash once if AGWPE has sent a packet to the soundcard and radio for transmission.

1. General Program Problems

General Troubleshooting Hint:  Any time you have trouble with a configuration setting in AGWPE, it may be best to just start fresh: close AGWPE and delete any port*.ini files and the agwpe.ini in your AGWPE directory/folder. Then restart and re-configure AGWPE from the very beginning. It doesn't take much time.

  •  I configured AGWPE to use my SignaLink USB (or some other USB sound card), but now AGWPE is using my default sound card instead!

    It sounds like your SignaLink or USB sound card has been unplugged somehow. If AGWPE can not find the sound card for which it was originally configured, AGWPE will use the default sound card in your system instead. To correct this, plug the SignaLink/USB card back into the computer and restart AGWPE. (You shouldn't need to reboot the computer, just restart AGWPE; but some computers may require a complete reboot.)

    If you are running Vista or a more recent version of Windows, also look at the Renaming a Card page
  • I'm running Vista (or Windows 7). I make changes to AGWPE, but the next time I start the program, the changes are gone!

    If the AGWPE folder is within your Program Files folder, Windows may not allow changes to any of the AGWPE configuration files unless you are signed in as an administrator.

    To fix this, either reinstall AGWPE in a folder outside of the Program Files folder; or use Windows Explorer to navigate to the other folder and,  using Properties,  change the security setting on the AGWPE folder to allow full control by all users for that folder and its subfolders.
  •  AGWPE starts but then gives a message that "Packet Engine Pro Shuts Down Abnormaly, It Is Strong Recommended to restart your Computer".
    AGWPE is behaving very strangely, particularly my radioport configuration.
    AGWPE won't start and locks my system.

    In the AGWPE folder, delete the AGWPE.ini file and all port?.ini (port0.ini, port1.ini, etc.) files and then restart and reconfigure AGWPE.

    The problem may have developed when you configured a radioport to use a COM or LPT port that was already claimed by another program or device; or the TNC was not plugged into the COM or LPT port; or you may have tried to delete and add a port without restarting the program after deleting one port and trying to add another
  • AGWPE starts and runs but first I get a message that says:
    AGWTCPIP.SYS Not Found! TCPIP Over Radio will be IDLE!"

    You have turned on AGWPE's special "TCP/IP Over Radio" (TOR) feature but have not installed the special TOR software adapter. If you really meant to use this feature, see the TOR pages on this web site for information about installing the adapter. Most people do not need or use this feature. It is NOT needed for normal packet functions or to interface with your applications (applications use the TCP/IP Application Interface to connect to AGWPE, not TCP/IP Over Radio).

    To turn TOR off and stop the message, go to the AGWPE menu (click on the AGWPE tower icon) and select TCP/IP Over Radio Setup. In the resulting window select "Thank's NO TCP/IP".
  • When I try to start AGWPE, I get an error message that says "Can not find WS2_32.dll"

    Sounds like you're running Windows 95. You need the Winsock 2 Update from Microsoft. See the Windows update page on this site for the full solution.

  • I'm running Windows 98 SE. After I configure AGWPE for my sound card and restart AGWPE, I get Windows' blue crash screen saying "A fatal exception 0E has occurred at (some address) in VXD KMIXER. The current application will be terminated."

    You have a problem with your sound card driver and the KMIXER.SYS, Windows' audio mixer kernel.  Windows 98 used VXD drivers in its original version but then switched to WDM drivers in SE (Second Edition). I suspect there's a problem with Windows calling the incorrect driver file. You might try totally uninstalling the card and drivers from Windows and then, when it restarts, point it to the new WDM drivers.  On the other hand, some users have found success, with the opposite, counter-intuitive strategy -- uninstall the newer WDM drivers and install the VXD drivers.

    Warren sent me his solution that is, essentially, to install the latest drivers for his sound card:

"Here is my solution to the Win98SE problem with the VXD and WDM issue with AGWPE. My problem was the VXD KMIXER(06) fatal error

My environment: Win98SE All Windows updates done Pentium 533MHz 512MB Ram Chipset Via Pro133 82C693A and 82C686A (Southbridge). Sound is integrated on the mother board and is AC'97 v2.1 CODEC in the 82C686A Southbridge chip.

When first checked, the drivers being used for the sound chip were:
VIAaudio.sys 4.10.3104 MMDevldr 4.10.1998

A visit to the VIA site gave a later driver package. The file downloaded was

(This also produces another volume controls interface, called Vinyl Deck, that gives an easier volume interface than the Windows one.)

Even though I read the suggestion about forcing Win98SE to take the VXD driver, I decided to just let the new driver package run and install WDM as it should. This proved successful and AGWPE does not now produce the VXD error.

The drivers are now: Vinyl AC'97 Codec Combo Driver (WDM) 10.10.2004

So it looks like a fix by using the latest sound drivers and these more modern drivers seem to take care of the use of VXD / WDM in different Win98/98SE editions."

  • The AGWPE banner comes up, but then I get an error message that says:
    Your SoundCard Driver cannot Support the Wave Format".

    One of two things maybe wrong:
    • Most likely AGWPE is configured to use a device other than a sound card, most  commonly, a telephone modem. To fix this, go to the Sound Card Modem /TNC Setup window, and select a sound card in the Sound Card Selection field.
    • Your sound card driver really can not support the wave format. Make sure you have the most recent version of the driver for your version of Windows.

  • AGWPE tries to start but then a "Copyright Violation" box appears. I click "OK",  but the program then closes.

    The AGWPE.SYS file is missing from your AGWPE folder. You can reinstall the entire program from the zip file or just the AGWPE.SYS file. (The AGWPE.SYS file has the date of the program, so don't use the AGWPE.SYS file from another version. It will display the wrong version date when you start the program.)

  • I can run AGWPE and my packet program on my laptop for about 30 (or 15 or 60) minutes and then it just crashes.

    Turn off the computer's energy saving mode.
  • When I drag my mouse over AGWPE's modems icon in the system tray, a message pops up telling me how the port is configured and how many frames (packets) I have received and sent. But even when I haven't sent any frames, as time goes on, AGWPE says that I have been sending more and more frames. Is that normal?

    It is normal. In its default mode, AGWPE calculates the "best" traffic parameters (slot/persist, resptime, etc.), every 2 minutes and these recalculated values get reported as sent frames even though nothing is actually transmitted by the radio. Don't worry -- AGWPE is not keying up your radio and transmitting on its own.
  • AGWPE loads but then my system just freezes. I need to power off to reboot.

    One user said that new sound card drivers fixed the problem.

  • I'm running Windows 95 and when I start AGWPE, the AGWPE tower icon appears in the Task Bar *not* the System Tray. If I right click on the icon, I get the usual AGWPE menu, but "Setup Interfaces" does nothing; the popup menu just closes. I can't seem to make AGWPE do anything.
    I fill in the new port information, close the program and restart it, but the port shows "IDLE" and I can't open the
    Properties window for that port by clicking on OK.

    You need to update the Windows "common controls" file, COMCTL32.DLL file. See the Windows update page on this site for the full solution.
  • AGWPE closed and the Packet Engine icon disappeared, but the modem icon  remained on the System Tray!

    This may happen if AGWPE is closed down unexpectedly. Usually restarting AGWPE will correct it, although a reboot may be necessary.  If AGWPE fails to start (you may get a "Fatal Exception Error" message), go to the AGWPE folder/directory and delete all files ending in .ini; then restart and reconfigure AGWPE.

  • Modem Icon Never Appears: The modem icon won' t appear until you configure an AGWPE port and then close and restart AGWPE. If the modem icon   doesn't appear then:
    • If you are running Windows Vista or anything more recent, make sure you have not installed AGWPE in a folder under C:\Program Files.

    • Double check the properties for the AGWPE port to make sure you have done it correctly. Use the Port Settings information on  this site for guidance.
    • Look for possible port conflicts with the PTT port you have selected. See next section:

Port Conflicts

It's possible that some other device is affecting the COM/LPT port you have chosen for PTT control. For example, one user forgot that he had an unused phycial adapter "installed" in Windows that was conflicting with the PTT port. Another user reported a conflict with the Palm HotSync Manager, which loads on startup and puts the COM RTS pin high;  Windows didn't report that the COM port was being used by the Palm device driver, but it was. Another user had both the COM port and an infrared port assigned to the same IRQ.  Another user suggested that, if your XP machine is running an NVIDIA graphics adapter, some of its drivers are reported to tie up COM1 for no reason -- so disable Nview 2.0.

It may be difficult to identify port conflicts, since AGWPE may start and run despite the conflict, i.e. no error message. Conflicts may arise either from a device, such as a printer, or from a program that uses the same port.

Try this first: temporarily force AGWPE to a port where there CAN'T be a conflict with another program. Reset the Serial or LPT Port in AGWPE's properties window to a non-existent parallel port, perhaps LPT 3  (scroll down past all the COM options to the LPT options).

If AGWPE now receives packets and your other program now works, then you know you did indeed have a port conflict. Fix the conflict (see below) and then change the AGWPE PTT port settings back to a real port, i.e. not the non-existent one.

To search for a device that might be causing the problem, first go to the Start menu and then Settings: Control Panel: System. On the  "Device Manager tab, select "View devices by Connection" and double click on "Computer". This should tell you which devices are using each IRQ. Look for a conflict with your chosen AGWPE PTT physical port (COMx, LPTx) and some other device.

If there is a device conflict, you'll need to either reset the port used by the conflicting device (could be hard) or tell AGWPE to use a different PTT port (might be easer). To change the port AGWPE uses, move the PTT cable to a different physical COM or LPT port.  Then make the corresponding change in the Port Properties in AGWPE.

If only one device is assigned to each COMx and LPTx port "serial port IRQ", then there is no conflicting device, so there is probably a conflicting program which is using the port. Either:

  • reconfigure the conflicting program to use another port
  • just close the offending program before working with AGWPE
  • change the PTT port in AGWPE (see paragraph above).

2. Linking to Client Applications

  • I am having trouble configuring my client application to link to AGWPE.

    There may be instructions in the Help section of your client application; or you can try the Application Setup page on this website.

    If you're having trouble getting a particular application to work with AGWPE, first make sure AGWPE works with  AGW Terminal Program. 

    If AGWTerm won't work with AGWPE, then you have a problem with AGWPE that needs to be resolved first. For example, if AGWTerm can't see to find AGWPE and you get messages like "Can't start monitorm conversation. Try running first Packet Engine (AGW.EXE)", then you have not yet configured a radio port for AGWPE.
  • I see the little green pixel flashing on the TNC icon     so it appears AGWPE is receiving packets, but the packets don't seem to be getting from AGWPE to my packet program; my program isn't showing any packet activity.
    When I try to run a client application,  I get an error message from the client indicating the IP connection was refused.

    Check for these problems:
    • Make sure AGWPE's TCP/IP Application Interface is active: from the AGWPE menu select Setup Interfaces . On the Winsock & HTTP Interface Setup screen; Winsock Interface tab, enable the Winsock TCP/IP Application Interface with a checkmark. Also make sure the TCP field is set 8000.
    • Any application linking to AGWPE with the TCP/IP Application Interface should have a corresponding field to specify AGWPE's TCP port  number (8000, by default); see the Application Setup page for advice about selected programs. The application should also have a field to specify the IP Address of the computer where AGWPE is running. That address will be "" or "localhost" if AGWPE is on the same computer as the application.  Read the application's Help section or see AGWPE on a Network for advice when AGWPE is on a different computer.
    • Make sure the application is listening to the correct AGWPE radio ports. The application may be linked to AGWPE but not linked to all of AGWPE's radio ports. For example, some programs, such as UI-View, allow you to block access to  specific AGWPE radio ports (UI-View calls it "masking" ). Read the application's Help section or see the Application Setup page for advice about selected programs.
    • Make sure the TCP/IP Protocol is installed on your computer (for XP and older computers). If you use the internet successfully, then it is. If you don't have either the Window's Dialup adapter or a network card installed on your computer, then the protocol may not be installed. To correct this, just create a Dialup connection (see Windows' Help for advice; you can use a dummy telephone number for the connection).

      If you still have a problem, make sure the "Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)" is installed for the Dialup connection or the network adapter. Normally it is installed by default and active, but it may have been deleted somehow (see the Windows: Enabling the TCP/IP Protocol page for advice).
    • If you have a firewall program and/or router running, turn off the firewall temporarily to see if this fixes the problem. If it does, configure the firewall and/or router so that AGWPE can communicate with other programs via AGWPE's TCP/IP Application Interface port (default is 8000).
    • Try changing the default TCP Port from 8000 to some other number, say 8100. Make the change in both AGWPE and in your client program.
  • My packet program suddenly closed and I got this error message from Windows:

    (The Application) caused an invalid page fault in module WINMM.DLL

    You probably have a Windows sound scheme in effect and there was a conflict over use of the sound card. To prevent this from happening, set the Windows' Sound scheme to No Sounds. See the Window Sound Settings page on this site for further advice.


  • I seem to have the AGWPE program working fine. My problem is when I run certain packet programs, such as RXClust or AGWTerm, a box opens saying:
Object Windows Exception

Failure in common control DLL

OK to resume? YES / NO

This is a Windows 95, 98, and ME problem. Do an online search for comctl32.dll to find a download patch for your version of windows.

  • I have two applications sharing an AGWPE sound card radio port. But Application A is not seeing packets sent by Application B and vice versa.

    It is a feature of AGWPE that the received frames it sends to an application do not include frames transmitted by other applications using the same instance of AGWPE. So if you have this:

    App A ------->-|
                      AGWPE -------> radio(s) etc.
    App B ------->-|

    Then, using KISS frames, App A will not see the original frames transmitted by App B.

    If you do want App A to see App B's transmission, then a work-round is to configure a loop-back port in AGWPE. Then transmit the beacons from your application(s) to the RF radioport and to the loop-back port, and configure your application(s) to "listen" on both the RF radioport and the loop-back port so they can hear what the other program asked AGWPE to send.

3.  Extra Packets Seen

  • If your packet application displays duplicates of every received packet, reasons can be:
    • the second sound card radioport is active in AGWPE even though it is not being used. Try changing the second port's baud rate to something other than the first. Better yet, if you are not using the second port, select Single Port (not Dual Port) on the Properties screen, close AGWPE, delete the port1.ini file from the AGWPE folder (retain port0.ini, do not delete it) and restart AGWPE.
    • you are using a mono plug instead of a stereo plug for the LINE IN jack
  • If your packet application displays packets that are from another frequency:
    • you are probably running two radio ports from the sound card (left and right channels) and audio from one radio port is being heard on the other port. The reason for this is not clear. The best known solution is to reduce the RX audio input on each radioport to the minimum needed to decode packets using the volume control settings.

If your problem is not resolved by the problem solving pages on this website,  join the AGWPE Yahoo Group to ask a question or search the archives for previous postings that may relate to your problem:

Troubleshooting page on this web site:
    Program Behavior

Last Updated:


Top of page